Judas And The Black Messiah: The Inspired Album is the pinnacle of an audio companion for a film. The project is executive produced by Hit-Boy, RCA’s SVP of A&R Dash Sherrod, Ryan Coogler and RCA’s SVP of Marketing/CEO of Six Course Inc. Archie Davis. The film tells the story of Fred Hampton, Chairman of the Illinois Black Panther Party, and his fateful betrayal by FBI informant William O’Neal. With such a powerful story it’s only right that the soundtrack is massive, featuring new music from Nas, Hit-Boy, Jay-Z x Nipsey Hussle, Black Thought, A$AP Rocky, Masego x JID x Rapsody, Rakim + more. You’ll be hard-pressed to find another collection of rap that is this star-studded. Drawing from the movie, the tracks explore a wide range of important topics including revolution, fighting for human rights, racism, struggle, black excellence, and more.
With 22 tracks, it’s a powerful work with a ton of standouts. ‘EPMD’ sees Nas & Hit-Boy getting back to business for a gritty cut that has the legendary emcee painting vivid pictures of street tales, nostalgia, and mob dealings.
‘Welcome to America’ has Black Thought fighting oppression and trying to overcome the perils faced by black people in America from a different perspective with each verse. The lyrics are chilling and moving, while the hook from C. S. Armstrong & Angela Hunte serve to deepen the track’s impact.
Jay-Z & Nipsey Hussle prove to be the perfect pairing on ‘What It Feels Like.’ Nipsey’s verse is a tragic reminder of the greatness we’ve all missed since his passing, but a reminder that he’ll live on forever through his music. Jay flexes with his bars in the way that only the GOAT can. Taking us from cooking crack with a Michelin chef finesse to selling weed in the open and bringing folks home from the feds. It’s a celebration of making it through the struggle with sharp lyrics and political punches.
Hit-Boy has been running the game as a producer and executive producer, but with ‘Broad Day’ he makes a statement with his rap skills. With some of the best rappers currently and all-time featured on this project, delivering a standout track says a lot. The flow is smooth, the punchlines hit, and his confidence is unwavering. The song moves effortlessly from braggadocious to powerful with lyrics like, “Down to take a rubber bullеt for my voting rights.”
Despite the title ‘Something Ain’t Right’ sees Masego, JID & Rapsody coming correct. With each bringing a unique style, it’s diverse but incredibly captivating. Soulful, raw and eye-opening, it’s a can’t miss.
The tracks mentioned above are just a sample of the impeccable collection of music featured on the project. Check out the full release below and be sure to peep the film Judas And The Black Messiah for the full experience.